web analytics
Oct 192016
 

As much as I enjoyed the first film, I couldn’t wait to see its sequel Hotel Transylvania 2 and believe me it was well worth it.

Much has changed at Hotel Transylvania. Now that humans and monsters live in peace and harmony, Dracula (voice of Adam Sandler) approves of human guests and his daughter Mavis (voice of Selena Gomez) is married to Johnny (voice of Andy Samberg). Could things get any better?

Yes they can. Mavis and Johnny have a son named Dennis (voice of Asher Blinkoff), who is half human, half vampire, (a.k.a. a dhampir) and just adorable. Dracula is very close with Dennis. In fact, he even disguised himself as a nurse to see his grandson. That’s just not something you would ever expect Count Dracula to do.

Johnny’s family is introduced in this sequel. His father Mike (voice of Nick Offerman) is always so serious as he tolerates everyone around him. Johnny’s mother Linda (voice of Megan Mullally) tries to be kind but always ends up putting her foot in her mouth, making things become awkward.

Dracula has high hopes for Dennis to show his vampire side, but it hasn’t surfaced yet. Secondly, Dennis’s favorite monster is Kakie (voice of Chris Kattan) a TV monster that’s friendly like Elmo and bit corny.

After seeing how the numerous wolf pups can move around like a wild tornado, Mavis believes that the hotel is not a good place to raise Dennis and considers moving to Johnny’s hometown in California. While the two of them are gone, Dracula sees this as an opportunity to inspire Dennis. So Dracula and his friends Frankenstein (voice of Kevin James), Wayne the Wolfman (voice of Steve Buscemi), Griffin the invisible man (voice of David Spade), and Murray the mummy (voice of Keegan-Michael Key) take Dennis on a road trip to their old haunts. Even Blobby the blob monster comes along for laughs.

Once Mavis finds out, she is so determined to get back to the hotel, she actually carries Johnny and their luggage herself while flying back to Transylvania as a bat. I never thought Mavis was that strong. I guess it goes to show that you should never underestimate the power of a concerned vampire mother.

Here’s a cool addition. The hotel has an organ player, who is none other than the Phantom of the Opera (voice of Jon Lovitz). It’s neat how he was thrown in so randomly. That got me thinking. There’s no mention of what became of Quasimodo after how he was left in the first movie.

It isn’t until much later when we see Dracula’s father Vlad (voice of Mel Brooks). Although Vlad dislikes humans even more than Dracula used to, the real threat is Vlad’s servant bat monster Bela (voice of Rob Riggle) and his bat crew, since they’re always up front about it.

I really like this movie and find it even funnier than the first one. I also saw online that there is a third installment in the works. I have no doubt that it will only get better from here.

Oct 112013
 

For many years, classic monsters like Dracula, Frankenstein, the Wolfman, and the Mummy have been horror icons. They all unite with a bunch of other monsters at Hotel Transylvania, which is the one place monsters can party and never have to worry about humans coming for them. This is also one of few monster movies where the monsters are all good guys.

I must admit that the monsters in this movie are so creatively funny. Dracula (voice of Adam Sandler) runs the hotel and claims to have never said, “Bleh, bleh, bleh”. Frankenstein (voice of Kevin James) and his crabby wife Eunice (voice of Fran Drescher) prefer to travel by mailbox. The Wolfman (voice of Steve Buscemi) is a family man that’s always frumpy. It most likely has to do with having so many kids. Even the Invisible Man (voice of David Spade) and the Mummy (voice of Cee Lo Green) join in the fun.

The hotel has zombie staff, housekeeping witches, and haunted armor that always informs Dracula of emergencies, including a clogged toilet in Bigfoot’s room. It’s hilarious seeing how gigantic he is.

Things take a new turn as Dracula’s daughter Mavis (voice of Selena Gomez) turns 118. She wants to travel and see the world, but Dracula forbids it because he’s too overprotective. However, he lets Mavis visit a human village nearby and the humans attack her with garlic bread. As silly as that sounds, it was still a disaster, or was it.

But the hotel really gets turned upside-down when Johnny (voice of Andy Samberg) a human arrives. Dracula does all he can to hide him from the other monsters, even though Johnny isn’t really a threat. Since Dracula can’t get rid of him without any of the other monsters finding out, he disguises Johnny as a monster and tells everyone that he’s a party planner. The others found that hard to believe because Dracula is always such a control freak.

Of course Johnny is frightened at first, but once he warms up to the monster hotel he comes up with fun ideas for the party and everyone loves him for it. If only Dracula would just lighten up.

Eventually, Dracula warms up to Johnny after he experiences having fun on flying tables. After rescuing Johnny from Quasimodo (voice of Jon Lovitz) the chef, Dracula reveals why he built the hotel to keep monsters safe from humans, especially Mavis, even though she and Johnny have fallen for each other.

I really enjoyed this movie. It’s definitely the funniest monster film I have seen since Mad Monster Party and matches the brand of humor used on many of Adam Sandler’s films. Though I am surprised that Happy Madison Productions didn’t produce Hotel Transylvania, as many of Adam Sandler’s other comedy films were.

Apr 182011
 

In a peaceful neighborhood there’s one house that stands out from the rest, and that’s the Monster House (Widescreen Edition). The only person who truly notices is 12-year-old DJ (voice of Mitchel Musso, who has been keeping watch as the owner, Mr. Nebbercracker (voice of Steve Buscemi), keeps terrorizing every child who comes by. But why? Hmm, curious.

After DJ and his friend Chowder (voice of Sam Lerner) have a run in with Nebbercracker one day, Nebbercracker has a heart attack and passes out. The close up was a little creepy. Now it looks like the house is possessed. It lures young victims into its clutches by waving their missing goods just inside the front door. Is it possible that Nebbercracker’s ghost is out for revenge?

Soon DJ and Chowder rescue Jenny (voice of Spencer Locke), a prep school student, from the house and she joins the group. First they try the police, but that doesn’t help. “Smart house.” Rule #1: When faced with something supernatural, the only adults you can turn to are the specialists. So the children go to an expert, Skull (voice of Jon Heder). He’s a pizza delivery guy, who has been to many comic book conventions. (Awesome!) He says to destroy the possessed house, aim for the heart. Sounds simple, since the heart is the smoking chimney. The hard part is getting there without getting eaten.

DJ, Chowder, and Jenny do manage to get inside the house and survive. It really gets interesting as they explore the place and the mystery behind it begins to unfold. Unfortunately, the house attacks with killer slinkys and angry pipes. Thank goodness for large chandeliers. Ewe! House spit.

The Playstation 2 video game that’s based on the movie is more focused on the exploration inside the house. The three children get separated and fight all kinds of perils from living furniture to smoky pipe monsters. So what if the game was labeled to be too repetitive. I like it that way.

This was a good film with a really interesting story line. The exploration inside the monstrous house could have been expanded like in the video game, which would have made the movie even more interesting, but I think Monster House really earned its high rating as a horror mystery.